Private Duty Services - What should I ask?

Private Duty Services - What should I ask?

Here are some questions to ask if you are seeking an agency:

  • Most important question – is your agency licensed?
  • What specific services does your agency offer?
  • Are the caregivers employees of the company or independent contractors (this is important because if they are not employees then they do not have insurance and are not bonded)?
  • Do you run criminal background checks on employees?
  • Do you hire applicants that have a criminal background? If yes, what criteria do you use to hire someone with a criminal background?
  • Is a Department of Transportation check done to verify driving record.
  • Do you require caregiving experience? How many years?
  • Are you bonded and insured? Do you have workers’ compensation insurance?
  • Does your agency take care of all payroll taxes?
  • Will we be able to meet the caregiver before they start working?
  • How many caregivers will care for my loved one?
  • Does the company provide ongoing training (ask specifically about areas that may be of a concern such as dementia)?
  • Do you have someone on-call during the evening hours and on weekends? How long will it take to receive a call back if you leave a message?
  • What if my caregiver is sick? Will you find another caregiver?
  • Is a supervisor available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week if there is an emergency? If not, who handles emergencies?
  • How often will a supervisor do a home visit with the caregiver and talk to the family? Is there any other type of supervision that occurs?
  • Is the doctor involved? How often do you look at a plan of care for our loved one?
  • If we need to increase or decrease hours, how much notice will you need?
  • How often am I billed?
  • What are your hourly rates? Do you have different rates for the holidays? Do you have rates for 24 hour care?
  • How often do your rates change and how will I be notified?
  • How do I communicate with my caregivers? Do I call the caregiver directly to make changes to the schedule?

If you are still not sure, ask to meet the agency for a face to-face interview. This should help you make a final decision. Never be afraid to ask questions and confirm what you are hearing. Take your time…it’s an important decision!

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Each Visiting Angels agency is a franchise that is independently owned and operated. The Franchisor, Living Assistance Services Inc., does not control or manage the day to day business operations of any Visiting Angels franchised agency.